An eastern Iowa legislator says a “huge” employer in his district could be “on the verge of being extinct.” Senator Dan Zumbach, a Republican from Ryan, says if the Duane Arnold Energy Center shuts down early, it will put 600 people out of work.
“We have a nightmare on the horizon and it happens to be in eastern Iowa in the Cedar Rapids area,” Zumbach says.
Florida-based NextEra Energy owns the state’s only nuclear power plant in Palo. It’s possible Alliant Energy — the plant’s primary customer — may not buy electricity from the Palo plant after the current contract expires in 2025. Owners of the nuclear facility say it would likely close if that happens.
“The impact of this plant economically on Iowa in tax investment, tax dollars and jobs all make the future of this plant of critical importance to the entire state. The loss of this plant would be staggering,” Zumbach says. “I want to encourage all parties — government and private — to continue to work to keep this plant viable.”
The nuclear plant in Palo opened in 1975. It has a license to operate through 2034.